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snokid 08-17-2018 05:04 AM

Plex server
 
Hi one of the million YouTube sailing channels talked about a media server that ran plex. Looks like you need a nas box but that's as far as I can figure out.
Has anyone set something like that Up?

What I would like is to be able to be on watch and be able to stream a movie to my phone or tablet. Then on the hook me and my wife be able to watch a movie on the tv

loxxSail2 08-17-2018 12:03 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Plex is cool. I use it with my amazon firestick to stream from a pc in another room. I don't use a NAS box, I just use usb hd's.

Roughly sketching it out in my head, you'd at the very least need laptop with a good sized hard drive, then you could load plex on a firestick, jam it into the laptop and mirror it to the phone or tablet.

The biggest challenge would be getting a stable/fast enough wifi connection with enough bandwidth for it be a good experience for you.

capta 08-17-2018 12:28 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by snokid (Post 2051546410)
What I would like is to be able to be on watch and be able to stream a movie to my phone or tablet.

I'm sorry, did you actually mean that you want to watch movies and the like when you are on watch, or did I misunderstand you?
On any vessel I'm the captain of, the person on watch is responsible for the lives of all onboard, and as such, they are required to be on WATCH at the helm, not just in the cockpit or awake somewhere on the vessel.
Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

Ajax_MD 08-17-2018 12:30 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by capta (Post 2051546488)
I'm sorry, did you actually mean that you want to watch movies and the like when you are on watch, or did I misunderstand you?
On any vessel I'm the captain of, the person on watch is responsible for the lives of all onboard, and as such, they are required to be on WATCH at the helm, not just in the cockpit or awake somewhere on the vessel.
Different strokes for different folks, I guess.

Did you know that some people sail alone, and actually go to sleep with no watchstander other than (sometimes) a radar and/or AIS proximity alarm?

colemj 08-17-2018 12:57 PM

Re: Plex server
 
There is another way besides a Plex server to stream video. Our WiFi router has a USB port. We keep a 2TB drive full of video connected to it and stream video over the wifi. There are several free apps for tablets/phones - we prefer the VLC app. Our wifi-enabled TV also uses it.

Mark

tschmidty 08-17-2018 02:29 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Plex works well but depends mostly on downloaded content, so you need a way to get that content on your device. Which generally means pirating it. You could definitely run it on a laptop and stream to your phone if you have either a wifi router or can set your laptop up to allow your phone to wifi to it.

Jammer Six 08-17-2018 05:18 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ajax_MD (Post 2051546494)
Did you know that some people sail alone, and actually go to sleep with no watchstander other than (sometimes) a radar and/or AIS proximity alarm?

Some People drive drunk, commit suicide or buy a weapon and kill as many children as they can.

"Some People" just isn't an authority on anything.

colemj 08-17-2018 06:39 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by tschmidty (Post 2051546530)
Plex works well but depends mostly on downloaded content, .

I don't understand this statement. Plex depends on digital content period. This has nothing to do with pirating that content.

Mark

capta 08-17-2018 06:51 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ajax_MD (Post 2051546494)
Did you know that some people sail alone, and actually go to sleep with no watchstander other than (sometimes) a radar and/or AIS proximity alarm?

Gee whiz, ya think?
When I single hand I use a kitchen timer and set it to 12 minutes, which is the time I figure it would take a vessel from a clear horizon viewed from the cabin top to a point at which the approaching vessel could become a danger. So far, it has worked fine for all but one military vessel.
I would no more "go to sleep" for an extended period of time at sea single handing, than I would rely on an electronic device like AIS to keep me alive, unless EVERY SINGLE vessel was equipped with it, and I could be sure that the device was on and functioning correctly on EVERY SINGLE vessel out there.
But like I said, different strokes for different folks, and after all, it is your life you are putting on the line!

tschmidty 08-17-2018 07:20 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by colemj (Post 2051546586)
I don't understand this statement. Plex depends on digital content period. This has nothing to do with pirating that content.

Mark

What legal media content do you download and save to your hard drive? You can stream a lot of stuff, but even DVDs you own you can't legally save to your hard drive. That is the content Plex serves that can be done offline (it can do some other things, but not the question). You can't legally even download youtube videos (but of course it can be done).

There are two ways that I know of to legally watch content offline:
  • You can download some Netflix titles to your iPhone/iPhone/Android, but not your laptop. Probably your best bet for legal offline content, since you aren't paying for every show/movie. Just download their app and go from there.
  • You can download movies, etc. via iTunes but you can only play them through iTunes, so you can watch on your phone, iPad, laptop, etc. You *cannot* use an Android device. I *think* you can stream itunes from your laptop to a phone if on the same network so you wouldn't have to download it to your limited phone storage space (*maybe*). This can get pricey since you are paying for every show at $2 an episode and $10-$20 per movie

Neither of those has anything to do with Plex. If there are other good options out there, I'd love to hear about them since I think sailnet is a good audience for offline content.

JimMcGee 08-17-2018 09:26 PM

Re: Plex server
 
OK, I'm not a lawyer but basically media servers like Plex are subject to "Fair Use" restrictions. Wikipedia Fair Use

Here's a simple example:
I have a Norah Jones CD that I like to listen to on the boat. I can download those songs onto my phone or onto Plex and listen to them on board and it's not copyright infringement. I bought the content and am entitled to use it -- but if I burn a copy and sell it to the guy in the next slip that's piracy.

I've also read articles that say you can have copies of your content exist in more than one place, but you can only use it in one place at a time. Amazon Prime Music is a good example of this. I can download a song, but I can still access in the cloud on Amazon's server.

I'm sure some on here could get into the nuances, but that's the broad strokes.

MacBlaze 08-17-2018 09:46 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JimMcGee (Post 2051546626)
OK, I'm not a lawyer but basically media servers like Plex are subject to "Fair Use" restrictions. Wikipedia Fair Use

Here's a simple example:
I have a Norah Jones CD that I like to listen to on the boat. I can download those songs onto my phone or onto Plex and listen to them on board and it's not copyright infringement. I bought the content and am entitled to use it -- but if I burn a copy and sell it to the guy in the next slip that's piracy.

I've also read articles that say you can have copies of your content exist in more than one place, but you can only use it in one place at a time. Amazon Prime Music is a good example of this. I can download a song, but I can still access in the cloud on Amazon's server.

I'm sure some on here could get into the nuances, but that's the broad strokes.

Oddly enough current US law says you can format shift music cds but you can't format shift movie dvds. Unless its changed again. So no, ripping movies is not considered fair use. So it's technically piracy and subject to those fines they are always threatening you with.

You will find you can't rip a dvd with digging up a codec somewhere that breaks the copy protection. Here in Canada (last time I looked) it is even dumber; it's legal to copy things but illegal to break the drm.

MacBlaze 08-17-2018 09:48 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Oh, and Plex supports plugins, so I am pretty sure you can use Netflix, Amazon Video etc using a Plex server

JimMcGee 08-17-2018 10:04 PM

Re: Plex server
 
When we sold our boat I was playing with the idea of installing Plex on board. I'd purchased a new Garmin plotter that was network enabled and a fusion stereo that could be controlled from the plotter at the helm via FusionLink.

For a media server I was looking to install a Western Digital 8TB MyCloud server connected directly to a WiFi router. With this setup no computer is required. The MyCloud runs the Plex server on the MyCloud's Android operating system. Plex comes installed from the factory.

I'd use a Roku USB stick to access Plex from the TV, or alternatively upgrade to a little bigger screen and a smart TV with Plex already installed.

To get music from the server to the Fusion stereo, download the Plex app onto your phone. Under settings in the App enter in the network address of the MyCloud server. This way the app looks for the server on the local WiFi network, and you don't need an outside Internet connection. You then stream the music from the app on your phone to the stereo via Bluetooth.

I have an old Samsung Galaxy 3 gathering dust in a drawer. The plan was to put it in a waterproof case at the helm and run it in Android Car Play mode - essentially making it a dedicated interface to the Plex server for music. The networked Garmin plotter would allow me to adjust any of the stereo's controls from the helm, or I could control them from the stereo itself when I was down below. If you have an old iPhone you could do the same thing with Apple CarPlay.

Downsides:
Speed: The MyCloud CPU is not all that powerful. You're OK streaming a video to a TV in the salon. But you're not going to have two parents and two kids all streaming different videos to their tablets at anchor. You'll be limited to pretty much one video at a time.

Internet connectivity: One of the nice things about Plex is I can stream music to my phone anywhere. With this setup you won't have a connection to the Internet, so you can only stream to devices on the boat and maybe when you're having sundowners with a friend one or two slips over.

JimMcGee 08-17-2018 10:14 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MacBlaze (Post 2051546628)
Oddly enough current US law says you can format shift music cds but you can't format shift movie dvds. Unless its changed again. So no, ripping movies is not considered fair use. So it's technically piracy and subject to those fines they are always threatening you with.

You will find you can't rip a dvd with digging up a codec somewhere that breaks the copy protection. Here in Canada (last time I looked) it is even dumber; it's legal to copy things but illegal to break the drm.

MacBlaze, there's been a LOT written on this subject. On the boat we're mostly interested in music. We have a good WiFi connection at the slip for streaming video.

JimMcGee 08-17-2018 10:28 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Getting Content on Your Plex Server

Music - music is easy. You can purchase and download songs and albums off Amazon or iTunes. You can copy your existing CD's onto your server using Windows Media Server or the Apple equivalent. You do have to pay attention to how you name your directories so Plex can find the music.

Network TV DVR - If you have a masthead antenna and good reception in your area Plex has built in DVR support. You'll need a digital tuner called an HDHomeRun. Now when you get to the boat on Friday the lastest episode of The Big Bang Theory will be waiting for you. If your marina has cable you can buy a cable card for the tuner and DVR cable channels on Plex.

Netflix & Amazon Prime Video - If you do have an Internet connection at your slip you can stream Netflix and Amazon Prime video via your Roku stick.

Network TV On Demand - If you're at a marina where you can connect to the Internet you can stream network TV on demand through Plex Plugins. You'll find plugins for all the network channels and PBS and popular cable channels like HGTV, Lifetime, TV Land, USA Network, etc. Coverage on these plugins varies from popular shows on that channel to all current and some past programming.

JimMcGee 08-17-2018 10:33 PM

Re: Plex server
 
The real downside is there is a steep learning curve with Plex. If you don't have a techy personality setting all this up can make you crazy. And copying everything onto the media server is time consuming. But over time you'll build up a nice music collection.

Pair Plex with Netflix and Amazon Prime video and you'll never miss cable.

Over the next couple of years 5G will turn all this on it's head as you'll have landline Internet speeds anywhere you have cell reception.

With that kind of speed and everything in the cloud you won't need to store music locally.

sailforlife 08-18-2018 12:27 AM

Re: Plex server
 
I say get a good radar with an alarm and just go to sleep it will wake you when is 2 miles out anyways ....

colemj 08-18-2018 03:37 AM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by JimMcGee (Post 2051546640)
Over the next couple of years 5G will turn all this on it's head as you'll have landline Internet speeds anywhere you have cell reception.

With that kind of speed and everything in the cloud you won't need to store music locally.

Oh my, we definitely don't boat in the same areas...

Mark

colemj 08-18-2018 03:48 AM

Re: Plex server
 
So it appears that it may be considered piracy if I buy a legitimate DVD or a digital file, and then convert it to a format in which I can view its content on a device, or by a delivery method that is more convenient for me.

If this is the case, then I give a big FU to the industry, and am proud to be a pirate.

Why even try to be on the right side of this law?

Mark

MacBlaze 08-18-2018 01:03 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by colemj (Post 2051546724)
So it appears that it may be considered piracy if I buy a legitimate DVD or a digital file, and then convert it to a format in which I can view its content on a device, or by a delivery method that is more convenient for me.

If this is the case, then I give a big FU to the industry, and am proud to be a pirate.

Why even try to be on the right side of this law?

Mark

Why even try indeed. It's becoming as big a farce as speed limits. Very few people pay any attention to the law at all.

And it gets worse. In some media (e.g. ebooks) you often aren't purchasing the media, just leasing it. For example, Amazon can yank your digital content against your will if you do something like buy too many products and then return them too often causing your account to be suspended. Goodbye ebooks.

DRM and industry's abusive use of it is something we should all be up in arms about but most of us don't seem to care. I figure it will eventually start affecting us boaters as marine diesel engines catch up with tractor engines and we suddenly find we can't diagnose our engines without paying for the software, or even worse not being able to access it at all unless we are an authorized dealer.

Ajax_MD 08-18-2018 01:27 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by capta (Post 2051546592)
Gee whiz, ya think?
When I single hand I use a kitchen timer and set it to 12 minutes, which is the time I figure it would take a vessel from a clear horizon viewed from the cabin top to a point at which the approaching vessel could become a danger. So far, it has worked fine for all but one military vessel.
I would no more "go to sleep" for an extended period of time at sea single handing, than I would rely on an electronic device like AIS to keep me alive, unless EVERY SINGLE vessel was equipped with it, and I could be sure that the device was on and functioning correctly on EVERY SINGLE vessel out there.
But like I said, different strokes for different folks, and after all, it is your life you are putting on the line!

You're missing my point.

I think that a person on a crewed boat who is on watch, with proximity alarms set who is *awake* and watching a little video in the cockpit in between making his visual checks is actually a slightly lesser evil or perhaps on par with a singlehander sleeping with a kitchen timer and proximity alarms. Both are distracted and both are relying on electronic aids to assist them in their watchstanding duties.

I'm not really understanding your angst here. Your original response implied that you strongly disagreed with a conscious, alert watchstander watching a video in the cockpit but yet you obviously feel it's ok to singlehand and sleep with a kitchen timer to wake you. Asleep is asleep and that is not condoned as an acceptable practice even though it's becoming more and more prevalent and more technological aids are becoming available to aid a solo sailor. The guy watching the video merely has to lift his chin to scan his instruments and the horizon as opposed to rousing himself to a functional state of wakefulness and re-orienting himself to his situation every 20 minutes.

Face it, neither of these situations are optimal and neither of them align with what authoritative texts and organizations would consider "best practice."

I don't really have an issue with extended singlehanding or some guy keeping awake by playing a video in the cockpit. It's your hypocrisy that I object to. What about music or audio books? Is that acceptable to you or do you consider them to be too distracting to good watchstanding practice?

"Watching a video while on watch? Ghastly!"
"Don't mind me, I'll be grabbing 20 winks."

I appreciate that you have extensive offshore experience but have a care when casting stones in glass houses.

capta 08-18-2018 02:36 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by colemj (Post 2051546724)
So it appears that it may be considered piracy if I buy a legitimate DVD or a digital file, and then convert it to a format in which I can view its content on a device, or by a delivery method that is more convenient for me.

If this is the case, then I give a big FU to the industry, and am proud to be a pirate.

Why even try to be on the right side of this law?

Mark

The way I understand the law is that if you purchase the DVD or CD (I assume it is the same for Blu-ray) then you are allowed to make a "backup" for your own use. However, you may not distribute it in any fashion and this includes giving it away for free to anyone, including family members. You can distribute the purchased item in any way you please as long as you are not playing it publically or for profit without paying the royalties (BMI or ASCAP), say as background for a video or advertisement.
Pretty simple and not unreasonable, IMO.

capta 08-18-2018 03:11 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ajax_MD (Post 2051546796)

I'm not really understanding your angst here. Your original response implied that you strongly disagreed with a conscious, alert watchstander watching a video in the cockpit but yet you obviously feel it's ok to singlehand and sleep with a kitchen timer to wake you. .

A singlehander has little choice; he must get some sleep, sometime. However, cat napping (I generally do it in the daylight, in the cockpit, which I forgot to mention) is a far cry from "sleeping" for extended periods, relying on electronic aids for your safety. Also, a singlehander risks only his own life.
A crew member is a part of a team and is responsible for the safety of others. As a member of a crew, there is plenty of off time to do as one pleases and sleep, but on watch is exactly that. There should be no distractions and if one cannot do a 2 to 4 hour night watch without falling asleep, then sailing may not the thing for them. A watch is a job, just like any other job, it is not a time for videos or even music. Any distraction could result in catastrophe.
For example, a watchstander listening to music or a video with headphones on could miss the first strand of a shroud parting aloft or a sail's seam beginning to let go.
When the webbing that held my Yankee to the halyard failed, beating in 30 plus knot winds, it only made a little pop. Had I had headphones on I would not have heard it and the sail could have destroyed itself or fallen under the vessel as it came down, possibly fouling the rudder and/or prop. As it was, I heard the pop and immediate investigation allowed us to resolve the situation before any damage occurred.
I am as much mystified by your attitude to this as you are by mine. It is beyond my understanding how anyone could think that dividing a watchstander's attention between entertainment and his duty could ever be acceptable. It certainly isn't in the military or any commercial maritime service, and the stakes are exactly the same; lives are on the line.

MacBlaze 08-18-2018 04:32 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by capta (Post 2051546808)
The way I understand the law is that if you purchase the DVD or CD (I assume it is the same for Blu-ray) then you are allowed to make a "backup" for your own use.

This in fact is not the case as the law stands now. the U.S. definition of Fair Use does not include personal use and fair use is the only right you have to copy. The DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) makes software circumventing any copy protection illegal and you can't rip a commercial dvd without it. Oddly enough it is still a grey area in the U.S. with the media companies maintaining it's illegal, Joe Citizen ignoring the laws as written and nobody seemingly willing to take it to court to clarify.

In Canada, as I said, they made it easier on us. It's legal to copy but not to break the ubiquitous copy protection.


***

Back to the OP, if you happen to have an all Apple ecosystem, you can already stream your media to all your devices from a central computer. And there are lots of other media servers besides Plex

Ajax_MD 08-18-2018 05:07 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by capta (Post 2051546812)
A singlehander has little choice; he must get some sleep, sometime. However, cat napping (I generally do it in the daylight, in the cockpit, which I forgot to mention) is a far cry from "sleeping" for extended periods, relying on electronic aids for your safety. Also, a singlehander risks only his own life.
A crew member is a part of a team and is responsible for the safety of others. As a member of a crew, there is plenty of off time to do as one pleases and sleep, but on watch is exactly that. There should be no distractions and if one cannot do a 2 to 4 hour night watch without falling asleep, then sailing may not the thing for them. A watch is a job, just like any other job, it is not a time for videos or even music. Any distraction could result in catastrophe.
For example, a watchstander listening to music or a video with headphones on could miss the first strand of a shroud parting aloft or a sail's seam beginning to let go.
When the webbing that held my Yankee to the halyard failed, beating in 30 plus knot winds, it only made a little pop. Had I had headphones on I would not have heard it and the sail could have destroyed itself or fallen under the vessel as it came down, possibly fouling the rudder and/or prop. As it was, I heard the pop and immediate investigation allowed us to resolve the situation before any damage occurred.
I am as much mystified by your attitude to this as you are by mine. It is beyond my understanding how anyone could think that dividing a watchstander's attention between entertainment and his duty could ever be acceptable. It certainly isn't in the military or any commercial maritime service, and the stakes are exactly the same; lives are on the line.

The singlehander definitely has a choice- Don't sail in excess of his/her ability to maintain a constant, awake watch.

Hey man, lie to yourself however you like, but don't attempt to assert some sort of moral superiority over others when you're as guilty as everyone else who doesn't operate 100% in accordance with the rules.

Sleep is sleep, whether it's 20 minutes or 2 hours or 10 hours, day time or night time. It doesn't matter if you have AIS, RADAR or a trained chimpanzee. THERE IS NO WATCHSTANDER while you are sleeping. This is just as bad as the guy watching a video on a tablet.

A USCG officer wouldn't say "Oh, he was only sleeping for 20 minutes at a time when he struck that fishing boat that didn't show up on radar or AIS, it's ok."

Dude, I do not CARE if you singlehand or sleep, nor do I care how long you sleep. I also don't care about the OP who wants to burn a flick on watch. What I'm saying, is that your a flaming hypocrite that burns hotter than 3 suns. Your attempt to justify sleeping (for any length) as morally superior while crapping on someone who might have an earbud in while watching a flick is friggin' hilarious and there is nothing and I mean NOTHING you can say to me that will somehow explain that your sleep, however brief and technologically aided, is somehow morally superior or even safer than the tablet-watcher. You're both equally wrong and that's it. Period, full stop. Just accept that you're not perfect and let the OP be.

You are so deeply steeped in your own years of personal experience and good luck, that you refuse to even consider the possibility that you could somehow, possibly, ever be anything less than 100% correct. I mean really, how DARE anyone ever point out to you that you may have bent or broken the same rule that you're accusing someone else of breaking? The gall!

Your ability to BS yourself is so impressive that it's apparent to me that this conversation has run its course, so I'm exiting.

Ciao.

capta 08-18-2018 06:23 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ajax_MD (Post 2051546836)
The singlehander definitely has a choice- Don't sail in excess of his/her ability to maintain a constant, awake watch.

Hey man, lie to yourself however you like, but don't attempt to assert some sort of moral superiority over others when you're as guilty as everyone else who doesn't operate 100% in accordance with the rules.

Sleep is sleep, whether it's 20 minutes or 2 hours or 10 hours, day time or night time. It doesn't matter if you have AIS, RADAR or a trained chimpanzee. THERE IS NO WATCHSTANDER while you are sleeping. This is just as bad as the guy watching a video on a tablet.

A USCG officer wouldn't say "Oh, he was only sleeping for 20 minutes at a time when he struck that fishing boat that didn't show up on radar or AIS, it's ok."

Dude, I do not CARE if you singlehand or sleep, nor do I care how long you sleep. I also don't care about the OP who wants to burn a flick on watch. What I'm saying, is that your a flaming hypocrite that burns hotter than 3 suns. Your attempt to justify sleeping (for any length) as morally superior while crapping on someone who might have an earbud in while watching a flick is friggin' hilarious and there is nothing and I mean NOTHING you can say to me that will somehow explain that your sleep, however brief and technologically aided, is somehow morally superior or even safer than the tablet-watcher. You're both equally wrong and that's it. Period, full stop. Just accept that you're not perfect and let the OP be.

You are so deeply steeped in your own years of personal experience and good luck, that you refuse to even consider the possibility that you could somehow, possibly, ever be anything less than 100% correct. I mean really, how DARE anyone ever point out to you that you may have bent or broken the same rule that you're accusing someone else of breaking? The gall!

Your ability to BS yourself is so impressive that it's apparent to me that this conversation has run its course, so I'm exiting.

Ciao.

Wow, way to just blast out your opinion.
I'm not the one who brought up singlehanding. I don't advocate it and insurance companies definitely frown on it. But, if you are sailing distances, sometimes one has to singlehand, and there is no choice. Should your sailing partner become incapacitated, would be one time, don't you think?
Why are you blowing out 20 minutes time after time when I specifically said 12 minutes, which is a calculated figure, not some run of the mill made up number? But of course, you wouldn't know that because you've never had to think about any of this in earnest. However, some of us have actually calculated how long it would take the average vessel plying the seas these days to become a danger to us at our average speed. Even more obviously, something like your fishing vessel would be much longer because it is either not moving or it is moving much more slowly than the average merchant vessel!
And where in any of my posts did you see me refer to electronic aids as being acceptable as an alternative to a good watch? I do not even have, nor do I intend to get AIS.
If you actually thought about it before you wrote about it, sleeping or napping in the daytime certainly makes a huge difference to how easily your vessel can be seen by other vessels. Duh!
Furthermore, you, as a lifer in the navy, should be the first on here to agree that standing watch and watching a video or listening to tunes is not acceptable, unless your service (and thank you for your service, by the way) was done in the galley, where watchstanding is not really a matter of life and death.
So throw stones as much as you wish, but your house is just as susceptible to shattering as mine. The difference, however, is that my house is built on a foundation of experience and logical calculations, not emotion.

Caribbeachbum 08-18-2018 08:24 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Buy a Synology NAS box. Install the hard drives and connect it to your network (Ethernet or WiFi). No internet is required here, but it's nice to have. Enable Plex for video, iTunes server for audio. There are other cool toys as well. Copy your digital media to the NAS box. Make sure your media player is connected to the network. It's really, really simple. I have just been setting up a 12TB NAS for our new boat just for this purpose. iDevices will see the iTunes server; devices with a Plex client (Apple TV works) will see the Plex server. Enjoy your media.

I added some other stuff. For example, I added a web service and have mirrored Wikipedia on the NAS, so I can look stuff up when no internet is available. I've been considering mirroring other web sites, but I think most might prefer that I do not. Noonsite came to mind ...

Basically, the NAS will my boat cloud server. A good NAS will do a lot while consuming little power and taking up very little space.

JimMcGee 08-19-2018 11:04 AM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by colemj (Post 2051546722)
Oh my, we definitely don't boat in the same areas...

Mark

LOL, definitely a different ballgame if you're out cruising.

We're coastal sailors, mostly day sailing and some overnights.

IStream 10-03-2018 11:33 AM

Re: Plex server
 
We cut the cord last year so I've got a Plex setup at home with the Plex server software running on a dedicated laptop networked to a 3TB NAS device as well as an HD TV receiver. As was mentioned upthread, the NAS itself can run the Plex server but very poorly so don't be tempted. Many boats have a laptop for navigation and other purposes on board and it's not a problem to run Plex at the same time. Setting up Plex is remarkably easy given what it can do but that doesn't mean it's easy. Count on a day or two to figure it all out and maybe a redo once you figure out how you should've done it ;o) Almost any device (browser, phone, tablet, Roku stick, Fire stick, Xbox, smart TV) can run the Plex client and be used to view your media over your local network.

All my photos, music, and DVDs are ripped to the NAS but with a big enough hard drive in the laptop, it's not necessary to have a NAS. You can also use Plex to record TV off the air, play downloaded podcasts, etc. With their Plex Pass paid service (one time fee), you can also do things like have Plex automatically upload photos from your phone to your Plex storage area, sync media from your storage to your phone for watching/listening offline, or even access your online content over the cell network wherever you are.

All told, I'm pretty happy with it.

snokid 10-03-2018 12:27 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Caribbeachbum (Post 2051546882)

I added some other stuff. For example, I added a web service and have mirrored Wikipedia on the NAS, so I can look stuff up when no internet is available. I've been considering mirroring other web sites, but I think most might prefer that I do not. Noonsite came to mind ...

Basically, the NAS will my boat cloud server. A good NAS will do a lot while consuming little power and taking up very little space.


Wow that's a great idea will be doing that...

snokid 10-03-2018 12:33 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Capta yes you are correct any distraction to your job on watch isn't ideal. I'm sorry I shouldn't of asked this question in that way.
I do feel however if I have a tablet running a movie or music (no headphones) isn't much of a hazard to navigation. I'm not saying one should stare at the screen, but if you look up and take note every 5 mins or so I don't see the big problem.
enuff said on that topic.
Bob

snokid 10-03-2018 12:53 PM

Re: Plex server
 
OK now that those comments are taken care of....

I installed a NAS with plex on it. It's working just like I wanted it to.

For others that want to do this, couple of things I have figured out mostly the hard way!!!

Get the NAS/PLEX up and running at home first. You just don't buy a NAS and plop hard drives in it and have a plex server.

I was at the boat when I got this running very limited internet.

So if you are like me you have a laptop on board and you get wireless internet from a marina. That's all great and good, but how does the NAS get the internet to install the Plex software? How does your laptop talk to the nas?

so a least you are going to need the NAS and a router, now the NAS is wireless, part of the problem solved, you can now log into the NAS and set it up, but you can't install plex yet...

I don't know if this works with all laptops but here's what worked for me.
connect the laptop to the marina wifi, then connect the laptop to the router's internet in port (cat 5 cable) then in network settings I was able to bridge the connections... That gave the NAS the internet it needed to install plex.

now you can install plex on your devices.

So how I have this now(well as a couple of weeks ago, I'm off the boat for a few months now) I have a wifi router hooked to the NAS and if I want to watch something off it I just switch my wifi connection on my laptop to that router start up plex and presto I can watch.

What's not so documented is you have to pay for plex premium if you want to watch on your phone, tablet. Not at problem just saying it because I didn't know.

I did a qnap nas, I don't think brand so much matters from what I can tell.
ripping dvd's is time consuming and a whole new learning curve.
Bob

MacBlaze 10-03-2018 03:17 PM

Re: Plex server
 
So you've got to power what?
A NAS?
A laptop?
A router?
A tv/monitor?

Is everything running off 120 or have you converted some to 12v?

snokid 10-03-2018 04:26 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MacBlaze (Post 2051556356)
So you've got to power what?
A NAS?
A laptop?
A router?
A tv/monitor?

Is everything running off 120 or have you converted some to 12v?

As we are getting ready to sail away into the sunset :)
I only have so much time to spend upgrading the boat, right now yes everything is powered by 120v ac, but we only turn on the inverter when we are going to use those items.
I don't see any reason all of those items can't be run off 12v thou.


Bob

Caribbeachbum 10-04-2018 12:30 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by MacBlaze (Post 2051556356)
So you've got to power what?
A NAS?
A laptop?
A router?
A tv/monitor?

Is everything running off 120 or have you converted some to 12v?

All that (and more) runs on the inverter. Nothing is powered up, though, except when it's in use.

Caribbeachbum 10-04-2018 07:29 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Caribbeachbum (Post 2051546882)
Buy a Synology NAS box. Install the hard drives and connect it to your network (Ethernet or WiFi). No internet is required here, but it's nice to have. Enable Plex for video, iTunes server for audio. There are other cool toys as well. Copy your digital media to the NAS box. Make sure your media player is connected to the network. It's really, really simple. I have just been setting up a 12TB NAS for our new boat just for this purpose. iDevices will see the iTunes server; devices with a Plex client (Apple TV works) will see the Plex server. Enjoy your media.

I added some other stuff. For example, I added a web service and have mirrored Wikipedia on the NAS, so I can look stuff up when no internet is available. I've been considering mirroring other web sites, but I think most might prefer that I do not. Noonsite came to mind ...

Basically, the NAS will my boat cloud server. A good NAS will do a lot while consuming little power and taking up very little space.


I should I should update this ... Plex has a real taste for an internet connection. While we do have a network and WiFi, there is often no internet. So I dumped Plex. We use the Synology DSVideo and DSAudio apps instead. They are not as feature-rich, but they happily chug along on the local network without internet access. They are a bit speedier as well.

IStream 10-05-2018 11:11 PM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Caribbeachbum (Post 2051556556)
I should I should update this ... Plex has a real taste for an internet connection. While we do have a network and WiFi, there is often no internet. So I dumped Plex. We use the Synology DSVideo and DSAudio apps instead. They are not as feature-rich, but they happily chug along on the local network without internet access. They are a bit speedier as well.

That's odd. Mine works just fine, net or no net.

SanDiegoChip 10-06-2018 11:17 AM

Re: Plex server
 
Hi,
At the risk of sounding naive, can you use a router and a WiFi tv and a laptop with WiFi but no carrier?
We like Plex because it is easy to say find a comedy to watch on our USB drive because it catalogs all the content. However we rarely have a WiFi signal good enough to stream especially at anchor.
Thanks,
Chip
s\v Elegant'sea Blog

Caribbeachbum 10-06-2018 11:23 AM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by IStream (Post 2051556716)
That's odd. Mine works just fine, net or no net.

Others have told me this as well. I don't doubt you. Once you have it all set up and configured, it's probably OK with no internet. But you will never get it up and running without an internet connection. Since it started out so net-greedy, I assumed it would continue that behavior.

Caribbeachbum 10-06-2018 11:29 AM

Re: Plex server
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SanDiegoChip (Post 2051556752)
Hi,
At the risk of sounding naive, can you use a router and a WiFi tv and a laptop with WiFi but no carrier?
We like Plex because it is easy to say find a comedy to watch on our USB drive because it catalogs all the content. However we rarely have a WiFi signal good enough to stream especially at anchor.
Thanks,
Chip
s\v Elegant'sea Blog

yes yes. You have an internal wifi network on the boat and your devices -- ipad, tv, laptop, etc. -- use it to access your NAS, where your movies, tv shows, ebooks, and other stuff is stored. In those rare cases where there is access to an external wi-fi (marina wi-fi?) that is connected to the internet, you set your internal wi-fi to bridge mode and use it. You can also tether your phone into your internal network and use that for an internet connection, though this is not a straightforward process since cell phone companies hate it.

IStream 10-06-2018 01:18 PM

Re: Plex server
 
It's definitely true that it needs a net connection during setup. In addition to initial software configuration, once you load all your media it wants to go and download a ton of metadata for its flashy user interface. After initial setup it's pretty lightweight as far as network connectivity goes unless you've enabled net-specific (Plex Pass) functionality like being able to access your media from your phone while away. Even then, they generally provide a smooth offline alternative for online features like downloading media to your local device for offline use and providing a user setting to default to offline versions of content even when you are online. There was one short-lived, buggy client release about a year ago that broke all that and refused to do anything if you weren't online but they fixed that pretty quick.


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